ideo view the v
free supplement Issue 136 â€˘ March 2018
show GUIDE! canon refresher course
basics Essential Canon DSLR techniques for beginners to advanced enthusiasts
celebrity portraits From Hollywood stars to shooting world leaders
canon school l Getting a job as a pro photographer l Canon problems solved l Learn how to maintain your Canon camera
cash with your cGettiangna jobon as a photographer
go wild in the studio Capture amazing animal portraits using lights
Back button AF is possible with just about every EOS DSLR Brian Worley â€“ Canon expert
take better photos now
Learn new Canon DSLR skills www.digitalcameraworld.com to take your best-ever shots
entry-level to advanced
Whether you’re a real beginner or advanced amateur, our DSLR skills guide will help you improve your shots! Page 28
W Peter Travers Editor
hen there’s a learner driver on the road in front of us, it’s all too easy to get annoyed when they’re driving slowly, badly or taking their sweet time. However, I always try to relax and give these learners some space to do their thing – after all, we were all learner drivers once. The same can be said of photographers. When you see an absolute beginner all fingers and thumbs with their new Canon DSLR, it’s too easy to look down your nose. It’s not like we can ask beginners to wear L-plates on their cameras. Instead, we should remember back when we were beginners and how little we knew, cut these newbies some slack, and be on hand to offer a few pointers to assist our fellow amateurs. Whether you’ve just started taking photos with a new camera, or are a seasoned enthusiast, our main Canon skills refresher course this issue will help you take better photos (from page 28). This issue we head to talented Canon pro photographer Tim Flach’s London studio with our Apprentice to learn how to capture human-like expressions in wildlife (page 8) by photographing two big birds of prey. We interview Jillian Edelstein about growing up in South Africa and photographing famous faces from Hollywood stars to world leaders (page 64). While in Canon School (from page 79) we look into options to get a job as a professional photographer, how to give your Canon DSLR and lenses a clean up, and we answer more of your technical questions. In Canon Skills we shoot paint sculptures underwater, look at how to get started in gig photography, and focus stack for macro shots, all including free video guides. We’re also giving away a free 48-page preview guide to The Photography Show on 17-20 March, see over the page.
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Canon DSLR Skills
Back to Basics with your Canon
21 tips on batteries and memory cards, basic menu settings, camera modes explained, all the way to advanced skills like depth of field and HDR
Essentials 20 Inspirations
Stunning winning entrants to the Travel Photographer of the Year competition
28 Back to Basics
Got a new DSLR? Our guide takes you from the basic skills you’ll need once you take the camera out of the box to advanced skills you can master – in 21 easy-to-follow tips
38 72 Photo Stories 125 Next issue 130 Focus Point
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Tally-ho! Thomas Winstone goes fox hunting in urban Bristol – with a Canon DSLR
Did you think this month was great? Just wait until you see what’s coming next
Your missives from the PhotoPlus mailbag, the best stories from the web, the month in numbers, and reader poll results
Canon pros 08 The Apprentice 40 David Noton On Location 64 The Pro Interview
This month’s Apprentice learns how to photograph birds of prey in a London studio
David finds his photographic mettle tested on a SE Asia assignment to Laos
Portrait pro Jillian Edelstein has shot cultural icons such as Nelson Mandela, as wells as politicians and other celebrities
76 My Kit
Ben Sasso uses minimal camera kit, but invests his photos with emotional impact
New tests 96 Gear Update
Slick tripod brackets, lush photo printers, and other Canon-fit kit that will make you take a hammer to your piggy bank
98 Mini Test
Get those photos off your PC! We compare six online photo book printers to see which offers the best product and service
Test: 100 Lens Canon EF 85mm Fast and stabilized: Canon’s new 85mm prime aims to give you the best of both worlds
Super Test: 102 4K HD Monitors Canon School 80 Cash with your Canon Buyers’ Guide 114 Digital SLR Essentials 84 Not all pros are self-employed – some advice on finding a salaried photography job
Lens cleaning, removing sensor dust, and other essential Canon maintenance
What you need to look for in an HD monitor and six of the best put through their paces in our comprehensive lab test
Every current Canon DSLR, from beginner to pro models, plus lenses from Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, and more www.digitalcameraworld.com
Issue 136 March 2018
7 ways to improve your photography today
Project 2 Master the technique of zone focusing for sharp street shots
Project 3 Capture out-ofthis-world abstract images of paint underwater
Project 4 Focus-stack frames of flowers for front-to-back sharpness
Project 1 Challenge your camera skills and shoot a live music event
Tutorial 1 Get rid of distracting details in your landscape scenes
48-page mini show guide
Your complete guide to all the talks, exhibitors, master classes and pro photographer events. Download now at www.bit.ly/photoshow18
The Canon Magazine
60 Tutorial 2 Transform a portrait into polygons with filters and actions
Tutorial 3 Enhance a blurred backdrop by using the adjustment brush
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Who we are, what we do, and our favourite bits from this issue…
PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine Future PLC Quay House, The Ambury, Bath BA1 1UA
Editor • 5D Mark III
Technique writer • 5D Mark IV
“Photographing wild animals inside a studio sounds like madness, but Tim Flach has turned it into an art form as he taught to our Apprentice this issue.” Page 8
“My gig this month was to shoot a rock band’s gig in the low light confines of a local pub. Thankfully my Canon gear rose to the challenge – just!” Page 44
Staff writer • 7D Mark II
Art editor • 600D
“People-watching fascinates me, so this month I hit the streets of Bristol armed with a subtle focusing technique for capturing kooky characters.” Page 48
“As a clean freak (but not OCD diagnosed) dust is your number one enemy. So while it’s cold out, learn how to clean and maintain your kit in our Canon School.” Page 84
Head of testing • 6D
Technical writer • 760D
“We take pictures to try and capture memories, so what could be better than a photo book? It’s a chance to bring photos together to share a story.” Page 98
“My home office has been packed with half a dozen glorious 4K UHD screens this month, and a Netflix subscription. It’s a tough job but someone has to do it...” Page 102
This issue’s contributors… Tim Flach
is famous for his emotive photos of wildlife. He guides our Apprentice in shooting birds of prey. Page 8
A minimalist when it comes to his camera kit, Ben loads his photos with powerful human emotion. Page 76
loves shooting in SE Asia, but finds his photographic mettle challenged while visiting Laos. Page 40
It’s winter, so use the long, dark nights to clean and maintain your Canon EOS cameras and kit. Page 84
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From modest South African roots, Jillian has gone on to shoot famous politicians and cultural icons. Page 64
Our resident Canon guru is here to answer your most technical Canon and photo kit queries. Page 88
Thomas was on the hunt for urban red foxes in Bristol, but used his Canon DSLR to do the shooting. Page 72
Ben tests six of the best photo books for displaying your images plus picks the best value option. Page 98
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the eagle has landed
Canon pro Tim Flach teaches our Apprentice how to take great portraits of birds of prey in his London photostudio
the Canon PRO Name:
tim flach Camera:
Canon EOS 5DS Tim is a London-based photographer best known for his stylized portraits of wildlife and for capturing human-like characteristics in animals. His photographs are showcased in books, exhibitions and collections around the world. Although based in his spacious photo studio in Shoreditch, Tim travels all around the world in search of interesting wildlife to photograph. His latest book, Endangered, is out now. (For more info, see timflach.com and far right.)
SHOOT SHOOTWITH WITHAAPRO PRO
FACTFILE Tim Flach’s new book endangered species
Rebecca FULCHER Camera:
Canon EOS 7D Mk II From Milton Keynes, 43-year old Rebecca works as a contracts administrator. She’s been an avid reader of PhotoPlus magazine since issue 1. She’s also been a keen photographer for the last 28 years and has recently focussed on wildlife. After buying Canon DSLRs she wanted to learn the tricks and techniques involved with some additional tutoring. Her first DSLR was a Canon EOS 350D, then a 70D, and she recently upgraded to a 7D Mk II.
The Canon Magazine
the epic book Endangered by Tim Flach is the result of an extraordinary multi-year project to document the lives of threatened species. Travelling around the world – from forest to savannah to the polar seas to coral reefs – Tim has constructed a powerful visual record of remarkable animals facing harsh challenges. Among them are primates coping with habitat loss, big cats in a losing battle with human settlements, elephants hunted for their ivory, and birds taken as pets. Endangered unfolds as a series of vivid, interconnected stories, unforgettably expressed by over 180 of Tim’s incredible images. bit.ly/endangered_flach
theApprentice TECHNIQUE ASSESSMENT
After talking through her settings, Tim advised Rebecca to tweak two key modes on her 7D Mk II
HOT SHOT #1
Manual mode Rebecca often only used Aperture Priority (Av) mode. “However, to take control of your exposures you need to shoot in Manual,” Tim says. “This enables you to set the aperture and shutter speed to get the results you want, and is essential when photographing with lights. With your exposure fixed in Manual, you can then adjust your lights for the perfect exposure. This way you control which parts of your wildlife subject and backdrop are lit and which areas are in shadow.”
aperture for dof As your focal length increases, depth of field decreases – this is further reduced the closer you are to your subjects. “If you’re shooting close up with a wide aperture on a 100mm macro lens, you only have a very shallow band in shot that will appear sharp,” says Tim. “Instead I got Rebecca to set a narrow aperture of f/16 for more depth of field and to ensure she captures detail in all the bird’s feathers.”
pro lighting setup Tim uses lots of heads and diffusers for good lighting to show off the wildlife’s fur or feathers at their best. For Hot Shot #1 (right) he used two lights on the background for a smooth gradation effect, one light high to the left bouncing from inside a large umbrella and then shooting through a large diffusing panel for the catch light in the bird’s eye, one strip light right to brighten up the side of the bird in shadow, and finally one ringflash front and centre for fill-in light. It’s a complex setup, but you can still capture great animal portraits with a two or four-light setup.
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM
1/80 sec, f/8, ISO100
Top gear #1
Battery-powered lights “Tim didn’t get in a flap when there was a power cut – just after he and Ed, his assistant, had spent over an hour setting up various studio lights – he calmly got Ed to set up his large selection of battery-powered Broncolor lights and methodically set up from scratch again. “You have to be ready to adapt to any situation. Normally problems arise when out in the field – not in my London photostudio! – but there’s always a solution to getting the shots. We always keep my battery lights charged up and ready to go,” smiles Tim.
SHOOT WITH A PRO
Rebecca’s comment For this first setup Tim (and his assistant Ed) were careful to get the lights perfectly set up before the bird of prey was brought in, as it’s important for the birds to settle naturally without having the interruption of a new light that may be needed. We wanted to get a natural first pose looking directly at the camera and used the aid of dog squeaky toys to gain the bird’s attention – and I caught this inquisitive expression.
theApprentice tim’s tips for better wildlife studio shots
Stuffed animal stand-in If you are working with animals in the studio, have a stand-in to prepare. I usually have a fluffy toy. It’s much better to plan things out to avoid stressing an animal and losing a window of opportunity.
Down to their level If the animal allows you the opportunity (domestic animals) it generally serves well to come down to their level, creating that sense of intimacy to generate a sense of connection.
Top gear #2
Big sensor EOS DSLR Tim uses a Canon EOS 5DS which has a massive 50-megapixel sensor enabling him to capture both large images ideal for big prints, plus vast amounts of fine detail in fur and feathers. “The 5DS also means we can confidently crop a vertical shot from a horizontal file and know it will still be high enough resolution for full page in the magazine,” says Tim, “Plus the majority of my wildlife shots in the field are shot with my Canon gear as I need Canon’s longer telephoto lenses to reach nature subjects in the distance, where medium format camera lenses can’t compete.”
Sense of emotion Consider how things evoke a sense of emotion within the pictures. This can be generated through feel and atmosphere; for example, using a predominantly cool colour palette to create a sense of the nocturnal when photographing an owl.
Animal handler If the animal has a handler, it is important to communicate effectively with them because they know the animal best and can help you to achieve your plan.
How should the image work? My general approach is to question how you want the images to work on the viewer.
Animal’s personalities Think about a sense of character and personality; you are much more likely to connect with the viewer.
Emphasize interesting elements It is important to recognize the elements you find most interesting in the wildlife, then set about helping the viewer to find them. This might entail changing the contrast of edges to redirect the eye or to reshape the picture tonally in Photoshop.
Fill lights I use a key flash and often use a ring flash to fill in as they create a more interesting texture in the shadow. To create the illusion of daylight I add a 1/4 blue filter.
Inspiration board of prints It’s good to have magnetic boards. I print my images and keep them up over time to see them with a fresh pair of eyes each day.
Test your kit It is very important to test the potential of the equipment you own – test the boundaries to understand the parameters of what the kit can do. It pays dividends to invest a bit of time!
stuffed animals! before Tim starts setting up his lights or taking photos, he studies the animal to work out which colours and tones to expose, and the colour of their eyes. “I’ll then use one of my stuffed animal toys with the same fur colour and face shape to set up my lights. The grey koala toy was an ideal stand in to use before we photographed the Great Grey Owl. With the toy in position, I then think about all my lights and adjust their height, angle, power, distance,” reveals Tim. He also uses different props to attract an animal’s attention to capture good expressions. Some wildlife are attracted to noises where others have better eyesight and will follow props as he moves them.
Top gear #3
Macro lens for sharpness “canon’s macro lenses are incredibly sharp and capture the levels of details I’m after, without any distortion or loss of sharpness around the edges. I use Canon’s EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM which is great to use on a tripod and, thanks to the Image Stabilization, handheld as well. A 100mm focal length also means I can shoot from a good distance without distracting the birds,” says Tim.
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